Thermoloc

Big-Un

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Thread starter #1
A question: what is the ideal temperature for thermoloc to be worked? I'm having trouble with the microwave heating a "glob" of it and was considering using a regular small oven or making one with a light bulb (used to heat my lunch on construction jobs with one,) don't want to fry it,just make it malleable.
 

mitch

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#4
i've always just used a heat gun, but have wondered if anybody ever tried making some sort of low temp pot to hold it at a workable consistency. does anybody ever have a more or less constant need for the stuff, like a bench jeweler keeping a pickle pot at the ready all day? my usage is so sporadic it wouldn't make sense for me.
 
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#7
Try boiling water, put the thermolock in a cup or bowl and pour boiling water over it. Let it heat up for 2-4 min. Repeat the process depending on the size of the thermolock ball.
I make small pancakes, they heat up quicker than balls.
Hope this helps.
 

gcleaker

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#8
Does anyone know just how hot those little poparay crock pots get? I use one for a pickle pot but I do not have a thermometer to see what it’s temp is. I only paid 2.00 buck for it at good will.
Skill comes from diligence.
 

DKanger

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#10
i've always just used a heat gun, but have wondered if anybody ever tried making some sort of low temp pot to hold it at a workable consistency.
Lee bullet molds make a small lead casting pot with a rheostat that goes from 0 to 9. I have no idea what the temps for the lower settings are. It will melt lead at the 7 setting. Going to be busy for the next couple of days, but will check later in the week if CRS permits.
 

colinskelly

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#11
I use both a heat gun (great to loosen the surface of the thermoloc quickly) and an electric kettle (made by Sunbeam, $15 at target). The electric kettle is best for larger pieces of thermoloc or if you need to reshape the entire piece of plastic. I find that cleanup is almost nonexistent if the plastic is soft enough to form against the metal without filling every last nook and cranny. Gentle heating with the heat gun or jewelry steam cleaner, while wiggling the metal can break any grip from the plastic. If you over heat the plastic or the metal and the thermoloc oozes under gemstones etc, a bath in acetone will dissolve the plastic. Suspending a glass jar in the ultrasonic cleaner can also speed up the cleanup.
 
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#13
Does anyone know just how hot those little poparay crock pots get? I use one for a pickle pot but I do not have a thermometer to see what it’s temp is. I only paid 2.00 buck for it at good will.
Skill comes from diligence.
I gave my idea a try today and it was a great fail. It took to long to heat up 3 hours and thermal lock stuck to the liner. The heat gun is the best tool that I have found for the jod.
 

Big-Un

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Thread starter #14
Thanks for the replies everyone. I use hot glue, tried cold glue (didn't work), a microwave, and a heat gun but was wondering about the heat to make it malleable for use without burning my hands while working it. The microwave is useful but inconsistent and the heat gun is spotty at times, and the hot glue works really well with Mitch's wood blocks. I also use double sided tape but sometimes the piece vibrates, not good. I think I'll try heating t-lock in a small crock pot or warm water to get it useful without burning my hands or sticking to me and everything else. I'm just looking for a way to make some holding molds for constant use and keep them for future use.
 

Doc Mark

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#15
Big-Un,

I use Thermoloc quite a bit. I've found that the secret is to keep the amounts in small quantities. It's easy when you first start with the rods of T-Loc but remelting a large chunk is tricky. I put the large chunk in the microwave and start heating at 20 sec. intervals. When it starts to move begin flattening the blob. When it starts getting too hot to handle plunge your hands in cool water and continue to flatten the mass after every reheating. Do all of this on the GRS teflon pad so it doesn't stick. Continue heating slowly and by keeping your hands wet you will soon be able to knead the mass into a workable condition. Any T-Loc that you don't use right away roll into rods so the next time will heat more quickly and easily.
 

JTC

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#17
I use a hot air gun. Takes just a minute to get the Thermolock soft enough to hold without being too hot to damage the item. Same procedure to release. Wave the hot air over the item until Thermolock just soft enough to release. Very simple and fast.
 

Big-Un

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Thread starter #18
Big-Un,

I use Thermoloc quite a bit. I've found that the secret is to keep the amounts in small quantities. It's easy when you first start with the rods of T-Loc but remelting a large chunk is tricky. I put the large chunk in the microwave and start heating at 20 sec. intervals. When it starts to move begin flattening the blob. When it starts getting too hot to handle plunge your hands in cool water and continue to flatten the mass after every reheating. Do all of this on the GRS teflon pad so it doesn't stick. Continue heating slowly and by keeping your hands wet you will soon be able to knead the mass into a workable condition. Any T-Loc that you don't use right away roll into rods so the next time will heat more quickly and easily.
Thanks Mark, I'll give that a shot.
 
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Midway, UT
#19
I use a heat gun. If I am making a reusable fixture, I build it on the vise under a heat lamp. The heat lamp keeps each piece malleable as I soften the next little chunk to add. When it is close, you can still push the Thermolock around with your finger to make locking edges and such over the piece
 
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Dec 19, 2017
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Baku, Azerbaijan
#20
I use hot (not boiling) water - it gets soft enough to shape a fixture directly on the vise, and to release I put only the surface of the working plate in hot water, easy to release and re-use.
IMG_2134.JPG
 

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